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Poster: sakanaband Date: Oct 25, 2013 10:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Live album of new material

DudleyDead's recent thread about the 1989 "Formerly the Warlocks" shows reminded me about something I used to fantasize about back in the day:

I always wished the Grateful Dead would just put out a live-version album of their newest written material rather than trying to (mostly unsuccessfully) create a studio masterpiece. Even include a few of their choice cover songs! Whaddy y'all think would have made a good list around that era or others.

I'll toss a few into the ring and see if anybody cares to respond. Around that fertile summer 1989 through summer 1990 era here are a few I might have included rather than the studio album of 'Built to Last':

* 1990-06-08 Cal Expo "Foolish Heart > Jam"
* 1988-06-23 Alpine Valley "Believe It Or Not"
* 1990-03-16 Cap Center "Blow Away"
* 1989-10-25 Miami Arena "Standing On the Moon"
* 1989-10-16 Brendan Byrne "Memphis Blues Again"
* 1989-12-10 Great Western Forum "Baby Blue"
* 1989-12-10 The Spectrum "Hey Pocky Way"

These are not definitive or anything, but just popped up in my head right away. Have a great weekend, y'all.

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Poster: Purple Gel Date: Oct 26, 2013 10:14am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Live album of new material

We used to say that the Dead's studio routine went something like this:
1) Write some really good songs.
2) Over rehearse them until you have made them bland and have completely drained the life out of them.
3) Record them for the new album.

This post was modified by Purple Gel on 2013-10-26 17:14:32

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Poster: Pat Buzby Date: Oct 25, 2013 11:05am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Live album of new material

Phil did try including some new material and covers on Without A Net although it didn't work out as well as it could have. There is also Infrared Roses which is mostly from that era and is great (and underrated).

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Poster: William Tell Date: Oct 25, 2013 11:08am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

Just to make the point, one more time, I assume you used the term "...mostly..." to qualify because, of course, both American Beauty and Workingman's Dead are precisely what you wanted, "...studio masterpieces..."

Right?

I agree that all the others ALWAYS fell flat; it's funny how we all raved about the "new directions...jazz influenced...pop relevant..." aspects of all the others, including Wake ot Flood (yrs later: blah!), MarsHot (again, seemed good at the time, but it NEVER entered the rotation for "here, let me impress you with what my band can do!" that I am always on about round here), much less any of the others...

I mean really: anyone here play BfAllah? Or Shakedown street?

I don't think any album lasted more than six months, even for me during my PRIME DEAD worship era (70-82) album-wise. I would buy, play, play, and then slide them into the collection for good, whereas any studio or live album pre 73 might come out at any time, even POST 82.

Anyone else? Someone, sometime ago, right HERE actually defended a studio release or two post 74...Can't recall who...

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Poster: sakanaband Date: Oct 25, 2013 11:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

William,

That's exactly what I meant!!! LOL. American Beauty and Workingman's are terrific studio albums. I think the Dead were on to something even when they tried to record on a sound stage for "In The Dark". The others are, well, unlistenable to these ears. Except maybe "Anthem of the Sun" that doesn't count since they are live tracks with studio nonsense added.

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Poster: unclejohn52 Date: Oct 25, 2013 11:39am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

I still pull out Blues for Allah. and Terrapin. Good albums. Where else can you hear King Solomon's Marbles?

Go ahead, heap your scorn. Those albums feature some very tight playing, although there are some misbegotten misfires like Sage & Spirit, for god's sake.

BUT - to your point - I haven't touched Go to Heaven or In the Dark in thirty years. I never bought Built to Last....

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Poster: AltheaRose Date: Oct 25, 2013 7:34pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

One of these days I'll actually get their studio albums. I have them on vinyl (rescued from my parents' attic), but never got the CDs or DL'd them, so I'd make a great test subject, since I literally haven't heard them in 20 years. But of course that's a lot of what we used to listen to. That plus cruddy, hissy tapes.

IMO the band has stood the test of time extraordinarily well, but for its live stuff, most of which was not actually available at the time! (Well, it existed, but it's the SBDs and matrixes and remastered de-hissified stuff that I'm thinking of -- the ultimate DPs etc. that really showcase what the band was doing -- and that is definitely not what I used to listen to. Or most anyone else, except maybe Dick.)

I never bought Built to Last either.

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Poster: micah6vs8 Date: Oct 25, 2013 12:02pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

I'd put up a skirmish for Blues for Allah.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Oct 25, 2013 12:21pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: uj & micah

I recall just loving MHotel; SBegonias, UBChain, and even PofCuca, eh? Just to hear Phil once more...but, they were all dropped pretty quickly.

Of course, during my obsession phase I really was just looking for ANY thing at all close to S&R (ie, back then, I didn't want LiveDead; I wanted S&R with little cowboy rock & roll 3-5 min ditties, workman/beauty tunes, etc.). Thus, these albums were at least that; but, boy, it really wasn't what we expected--ea one was different.

And, what's funny is that they spent the 60s lamenting that the albums didn't capture the "live essence", kept trying to do that, but then "gave up" and it was strange what came of that...ya know?

I don't know of any other band that made such a strange and complicated mess of mixing live & studio; of course, we say that about them in general, and maybe it's just the time span biz again...dunno.

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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Oct 25, 2013 3:04pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: uj & micah

I really only listen to the studio albums that the songs are really different from the live ones . Side one of Anthem, and BFA, would be ones I might pull out . And to hear the rest of the Terrapin suite , you need the album . Then there are the albums in which there are those mostly MIA songs ( Unbroken Chain, Till The Morning Comes, etc.) . But mostly, once we got access to the tapes, and the Dick's Picks , etc; what versions on those later albums is better than the standard live ones . And some of those albums, Shakedown (their worst in my book), or Wake , if you go track by track, and if you are thinking of the live versions,'great song, good song, great song,' , but why is this record so hard to defend ? I think in the case of Wake, it is the context . Putting all those laid-back songs together, in rather sleepy versions, did not make them shine , while in concert placed organicly with other songs , they seem to fit .
Another way I am a weirdo , is that I don't honestly get that excited by Workingman's, and American Beauty", rather hear Aoxomoxoa .

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Poster: William Tell Date: Oct 25, 2013 3:39pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: uj & micah

Well, DD, I'd say that puts you in good company w the DEAD, in that you are fundamentally "unhappy" with their studio output and prefer live...I get that.

Just like Little Sense below; though I am waiting to see who has put out a Masterpiece.

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Poster: ColdRain108 Date: Dec 30, 2013 9:44pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?



Grateful Dead was a live band in the same way that the later era Beatles were a studio band.

Studio tightness = multiple takes and overdubs with guide tracks and auto-tune. Ok maybe no auto-tune in 1970...


This post was modified by Little Sense on 2013-12-31 05:44:24

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Poster: William Tell Date: Oct 25, 2013 3:33pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

Well, yeah, it IS relative, but those two would make a top 50 for me for say, during 65-75 just to make it roughly comparable.

What would be the ten that you would put so far ahead of them as to say "not even close"?

Beatles? Dylan? BBoys? Who? I guess I wouldn't say any of those impress me as much farther along than our boys...of course, esp since vocals count, and are so much better on our two than live.

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Poster: RBNW....new and improved! Date: Oct 25, 2013 3:47pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

might be tougher to mention 10 that were worse.

no?

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Poster: bluedevil Date: Oct 25, 2013 4:16pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

I have to agree with Tell in the sense they last the test of time much, much better than many of the studio "masterpieces" from that era. They don't sound dated at all (then again, I consider Sgt. Peppers once of the most overrated things ever...)

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Poster: bluedevil Date: Oct 25, 2013 11:21am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

It may have been me professing my love for the studio version of "Far From Me" by Michael McDonald on Go To Heaven.

Funny stuff in this entry:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Go_to_Heaven
such as - "more of the same uninspired fluff that's become the Grateful Dead's recorded stock in trade", and, my favorite, "utter wimp".

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Poster: AltheaRose Date: Oct 25, 2013 8:01pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

Oh, that's funny. I tried to find the originals.

Here's the link to Robert Christgau's page where he excerpts all his reviews of GD albums up to '96. Often harsh but pretty spot on.

http://www.robertchristgau.com/get_artist.php?id=1445&;name=Grateful+Dead

"Go to Heaven [Arista, 1980]
Not counting the lovely revamped "Don't Ease Me In," the best song here is a Garcia-Hunter trifle called "Alabama Getaway." It grieves me to report that it isn't about dope dealers fleeing the troopers. 'Cause without hippiedom, they're lost. Utter wimp: new keybist Brent Mydland. C"

(He's wrong. The best song is Althea.) The Rolling Stone review -- by de Matteis, the guy who came to regret what he wrote -- is sure interesting in perspective!

"Eschewing the usual Zap Comix-inspired illustration, the world's most tenacious hippie survivors have chosen to pose–in slick suits of John Travolta white–for a very contemporary, very artsy, airbrushed soft-focus portrait ..."

And I think he means that in a GOOD way! That "very contemporary" portrait has sure aged worse than the "Zap Comix" ones. Heck, it aged between the time they shot it and the time I saw it at the record store. Seriously, what WERE they thinking? How could they misjudge their audience, themselves and Art Itself so absurdly? Well, guess they were trying to satisfy folks like de Matteis in his '80 mindset, whose review continues with this striking opinion:

"But there are two positive signs: "Far from Me" and "Easy to Love You," both primarily the work of keyboardist Brent Mydland. Mydland sings with the bourbon softness of Michael McDonald and crafts simple, straightforward pop compositions that allow the rest of the band to play tightly and impressively within definite musical boundaries. These tunes offer ample proof that the Grateful Dead can succeed on vinyl as well as they do in concert. More Mydland would seem a good idea in the future."

http://web.archive.org/web/20080618181821/http://www.rollingstone.com/artists/thegratefuldead/albums/album/89877/review/5945005/go_to_heaven



This post was modified by AltheaRose on 2013-10-26 03:01:13

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Poster: William Tell Date: Oct 25, 2013 12:27pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: albums of any kind...?

Oh, ya gotta love "utter wimp" (although I first read it as "uber wimp" which is perhaps even better, eh?!)

;)

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Poster: stratocaster Date: Oct 25, 2013 11:25am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Live album of new material

In keeping with this time period, the following would have to be included on principle, I include the Loser and Deal as bonus material

03-24-1990 Loser
12-06-1989 Standing on the Moon
07-19-1989 West LA Fadeaway, Deal
07-12-1990 Victim
03-29-1990 Kockin'

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